Working as a beauty writer practically requires me to turn up at work wearing as little product as possible – a blank canvas if you will – to be smothered and swatched in potions and pigments from 8 ‘till 5 - which means that I keep my morning makeup routine fairly minimal. What’s more, I am a trademark lazy girl, especially when it comes to rising at 5.30 five days a week – so I’ve started to rely on just the few beauty staples that really make a difference. These products are easy to apply, versatile, and make my face look put together but not overdone.
The key [as I have recently discovered] to wearing [and feeling like I’m wearing] as little product as possible, whilst still sporting a good enough coverage base to even my skintone and conceal imperfections, is in pairing a high pigment concealer with a sheer tinted moisturiser. I consequently have an ever growing collection of tinted moisturisers and BB creams – the most recent addition being the EDWARD BESS Ultra Dewy Complexion Perfector, which has far eclipsed many of my tried-and-true formulas. The weightless coverage feels like moisturiser when buffed into the skin, but has a natural, dewy finish that layers beautifully over my base of choice – EDWARD BESS Undo Time Blurring Perfector. I’m completely obsessed with this product – the reason being the amount of coverage that the tiniest squirt provides; part concealer, part primer, part complexion enhancer, 100% miracle worker.
Part-highlighter, part under-eye concealer, YSL's Touche Éclat Highlighting Pen is a tried, true, and tested favourite that I know I can count on to instantly brighten my face and look great all day. It covers all manner of sins and is insanely easy to flick on and blend in as an instant cure to 'Monday face'.
In lieu of copious contouring I add definition and colour to my cheeks with a few dabs of STILA’s Convertible Colour Blush in Camellia tapped onto skin for an undetectable flush. I love this colour – most blushes for light skintones are cool-toned and make me look like a porcelain doll, but this is warm and dusky. It makes my eyes look instantly brighter and my complexion somehow more even.
I set my base with THE ESTEE EDIT’s Flash Photo Powder*. The finely-milled, blue-hue blends into skin without being cakey or obvious – setting makeup and preventing shine with no need for 3pm top-ups. At the same time, unlike most powders it doesn’t compromise glow – instead it gives the most insane camera-ready soft-focus effect.
I stumbled upon the ANASTASIA BEVERLY HILLS Brow Definer during one of my many trawls of the Beauty Bay website. The micro-fine slanted point means you can perfectly mimic the look of tiny brow hairs, which helps to make my fill-in job look way more believable and keeps my brows looking full in-between tinting sessions. I like a bold, defined look for occasions but for everyday use, Soft Brownis ideal for a natural effect. Rising at 5.30 every morning means I’m far from an advocate of lengthy routines or unnecessary products, but I firmly believe in the power of a good brow gel. EYEKO's Brow Gel* is another recent addition to my routine, but is one of the best I’ve used. The formula is both subtle and separating at the same time, making for a perfectly undone brow that always looks good. It lifts, thickens, separates, and defines my brow hairs – I don’t even know where my emergency spoolie is these days.
MAC’s eyeshadows are revered by everyone – up there at the tippity-top of everyone’s eye-makeup list, and for good reason. They’re easy to apply, with the glide powder of a cream, amazing colour payoff, and no creasing, bleeding, or fading. I’m fanatic about the MAC x Brant Brothers Eyeshadow Quad*, it’s been a daily staple since I bust it out of the box. What makes it so good are the colours – the entire collection is designed to be unisex and the quad contains the perfect neutral line-up. Whilst the lighter two shades are fantastic for a subtly sculpted barely-there definition by day, the addition of the darker shades means that I can keep this palette deskside in order to amp it up for post-work frivolities.
I line my eyes with CHANEL’s Le Crayon Yeux Precision Eye Definer; this is an insider secret – it’s a super soft dark brown liner that makes the perfect tightline simple – instantly making my eyes appear more open and my lashes look thicker. I love using a brown liner for this purpose during the day because whilst it’s not as strong or defining as a black, nine hours in an office hardly requires a statement eye. Saying that, if I do want to amp it up for evening, this looks great smudged into a smokey eye along the lashlines.
I was recently introduced to Eyeko’s mascaras [having only previously used their eyeliners] and I’m unbelievably impressed [which, having been loyal to two mascaras for the past seven years is really saying something]. Like a magic wand for my lashes, their EYEKO Black Magic Mascara* provides unbelievable lift, curl, and separation [I’ve received so many compliments since starting to wear it]. It can be surprisingly hard to find true, dark blacks, but this is one.
I finish off the whole look with a quick slick of GLOSSIER Generation G Lipstick in Crush – the perfect way to add 100% all natural moisture to lips and add a hint of colour with looking [or feeling] like I’m wearing anything at all. It’s also surprisingly long-lasting – I haven’t taken it out of my handbag all month, and I don’t plan to all season.